Top 8 things to do this fall on the Space Coast

Home to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Florida’s Space Coast is best known for being the only beach that doubles as a launchpad, but it also offers eight great fall activities for the whole family.

Space Coast
Photos courtesy of Visit Space Coast

From harvest festivals and holiday celebrations to the arts and culture, families can not only enjoy rocket launches but also experience natural wonders, local history, and delicious local cuisine along the 72-mile coastline.

Here are the top 8 fall activities on the Space Coast:

1. Catch a Launch

rocket Launch

Four launch attempts are scheduled on the Space Coast between October and November, including SpaceX Falcon 9, which is currently expected to launch a Crew Dragon spacecraft on Nov. 6, 2021, at 11:36 p.m. ET.

2. Feast on the Space Coast

Space Coast - Melbourne Food Festival
Photo courtesy of Downtown Melbourne Food & Wine Festival

On Nov. 6, 2021, the City of Rockledge is hosting a Fall Food Truck “Feast”-ival with food truck offerings, beer and wine, music, yard games, and kids’ activities.

On Nov. 13, 2021, the Downtown Melbourne Food & Wine Festival allows hungry guests to sample tastes from the Space Coast’s most creative culinary experts paired with wine, beer, and spirits and accompanied by live music.

3. Celebrate the Arts

Photo courtesy of Brevard Zoo

On Nov. 6, 2021, Brevard Zoo’s annual all-inclusive Jazzoo event is back with music on six stages; food from 25 restaurants, caterers and food trucks; full open bars; and a sports bar. Performers include recording artist Jackiem Joyner, New Orleans Cajun pop sensation Amanda Shaw, Cover Story, Jay Dibella, Jeff Bynum, Katz Downstairs, LUVU, Last Call Band, and Trevor Dreher Trio.

Families can spend Thanksgiving weekend at the Cocoa Beach Art Show, a festival featuring art and demonstrations by up to 150 artists and exhibitors from across the country, along with music and food.

For film lovers, the 23rd annual Melbourne Independent Filmmakers Festival on Dec. 2-4, 2021, features screenings of local and international films.

4. Hike, Bike, or Run the Space Coast

Space Coast - Biking

The Space Coast offers many walking and biking trails, including three major trail networks that converge in Titusville: The 250-mile Coast to Coast Trail connecting Playalinda Beach to St. Petersburg Beach, the 260-mile St. Johns River to Sea Loop, and the 3,000-mile East Coast Greenway, connecting Maine to Key West.

Runners can also participate in events like the Cocoa Beach Turkey Trot 5K on Nov. 25, 2021, or the Space Coast Marathon & Half-Marathon on Nov. 28., 2021.

5. Discover History and Culture

Warbird Museum
Photo courtesy of Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum

Families can celebrate Native American Heritage Month at the 13th Annual Native Rhythms Festival on Nov. 12-14, 2021 in Melbourne, Fla. that honors the culture of the indigenous peoples of the Americas through music (especially the music of the Native American Flute).

On Nov. 13-14, 2021, the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum in Titusville, Fla., welcomes guests to see their collection of over 50 historic warbirds from the beginnings of aviation to the present day.

At 11 a.m. on Nov. 13, 2021, veteran astronauts Michael E. Lopez-Alegria, Pamela A. Melroy, and Scott Kelly will be inducted into the United States Astronaut Hall of Fame at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex.

6. Ring in the Season

Space Coast - Lightfest
Photo courtesy of Space Coast Lightfest

Trade snow for sand at Space Coast Lightfest from Nov. 19, 2021, through Jan. 2, 2022 (including Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day). The 1.1-mile drive-through event features more than 3 million twinkling holiday lights and animated displays — including a 200 foot “Light Tunnel” — transforming Wickham Park in Melbourne, Fla., into a virtual winter wonderland. Families can also stroll through the lights on Dec. 3-5, 2021.

7. Get a Jump on Holiday Shopping

Ron Jon surf shop

Any of the Space Coast’s historic downtowns is the perfect place to find something unique everyone on your holiday list, including Ron Jon’s flagship surf shop in Cocoa Beach, the 52,000-square-foot “icon of the surf and beach lifestyle.” For more “experiential” gifts, many of Space Coast’s classic attractions like Kennedy Space Center Visitors Complex and Brevard Zoo offer gift certificates.

8. Experience Nature

Space Coast - Birdwatching

The weather in Florida is beautiful year-round, which allows families to enjoy water activities like kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, or even surfing. It’s also an excellent spot for bird watching at any of the Space Coast’s 40+ sites on the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail.

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